A series of evidence demonstrated that obesity represents an established risk factor for an increase in the incidence of multiple cancer types and for poor cancer survival. Nevertheless, recent studies suggested that, in a series of cancers, patients with a normal body mass index (BMI) have worse outcomes than obese patients. This phenomenon, named 'obesity paradox' or 'reverse epidemiology' in cancer, is not well understood and presents controversial aspects. Therefore, this review aims to explore the available studies concerning the relationship between obesity and cancer incidence or survival and to highlight the hypothetical explanations and the methodological framework. In this regard, we underline the limits of BMI as a potential marker of adiposity and the relevance to assessing body composition, beyond the body size. Further studies are needed to define the impact of obesity in cancer patients, to tailor weight management after cancer diagnosis and to hopefully improve overall clinical outcome.

The obesity paradox in cancer: clinical insights and perspectives

Trestini, Ilaria;Carbognin, Luisa;Tortora, Giampaolo;Bria, Emilio
2018-01-01

Abstract

A series of evidence demonstrated that obesity represents an established risk factor for an increase in the incidence of multiple cancer types and for poor cancer survival. Nevertheless, recent studies suggested that, in a series of cancers, patients with a normal body mass index (BMI) have worse outcomes than obese patients. This phenomenon, named 'obesity paradox' or 'reverse epidemiology' in cancer, is not well understood and presents controversial aspects. Therefore, this review aims to explore the available studies concerning the relationship between obesity and cancer incidence or survival and to highlight the hypothetical explanations and the methodological framework. In this regard, we underline the limits of BMI as a potential marker of adiposity and the relevance to assessing body composition, beyond the body size. Further studies are needed to define the impact of obesity in cancer patients, to tailor weight management after cancer diagnosis and to hopefully improve overall clinical outcome.
2018
Body composition; Body mass index; Cancer; Obesity; Obesity paradox; Sarcopenia
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11562/975336
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 19
  • Scopus 40
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 39
social impact